Ten years ago, when I started Life Healing Life I had no idea what it would mean. I have since had thousands of visits with hundreds of womenI have shared so much with so many. From covering you up with a “good luck” baby blanket during your long awaited embryo transfer, to needling you when you were in labor after your water broke (you had a tuna salad sandwich on your way). From holding onto you while you cried after discovering the gender of your miscarried baby girl, to seeing your baby girl in the pink skies you see her in and your baby boy in rainbows. There was the moment you got the call on the acupuncture table saying you were pregnant, the moment you told your husband the good news and he jumped so high he scared the cat, the ridiculously sweet video of your little girl discovering the baby she'd been asking for was on the way (and actually there were two!) and the time you told me all about your new house (showed me pictures even!) and THEN broke the news that you were pregnant with a sneaky grin (so sneaky!). These are all real stories, you know who you are, and that you have left a mark on my heart. I have grown to care about you all. I love knowing you. I love that you let me in for the very highest highs and the lowest lows.
This blog post marks an new phase of Life Healing Life. Many of you know we bought a beautiful clinic with a teaching space last summer, opened this fall, and I’ve returned to full-time hours. You know this because, YOU share in my life too... my own pregnancies, joys, challenges, and real life ups and downs. One of you gave birth to your son one day from my daughter’s birth, another just days from my son’s. I know their names, you know mine. Have I told you that I love knowing you? I love knowing your amazing children too.
Over the years, a few of you have apologized for “letting me down,” when you do not become pregnant, I've told you then and I'll tell you again, nothing could be further from the truth. You did everything right, but fertility isn’t merit based (oh, how I wish it were!). It was only through so much grace and space and HEALING, you let go of something bone numbingly personal. Yours are the hearts that are fully alive even though your stories didn’t go the way you’d hoped, or maybe because? Do you remember when you told me it was like a crush in middle school going away and you didn’t dare speak of it for months for fear it would come back, or that you chose life, because your own mother didn’t get to and there are no guarantees? One of you sent me a picture of your newly adopted son as I wrote this paragraph. What a lot you had to let go of to get to him, I know it was incredibly hard along the way, and yet, here we are. You take my breath away. I am so touched by you.
Many of you have partners who I feel like I know. You wear matching socks when you do your embryo transfers, you suffer in your own individual ways, and still manage to be there for each other in this really hard process. I even get to know your extended families. One gave gratitude books to everyone they knew, one wrote poems, one sells pampered chef with gusto. Some are here, and some are not. And you have some of the most cherished little "fur babies" in the world and I even get to know them. One "speaks" with a German accent. One is huge, but convinced she is a lap dog, one enthusiastically "participates" in yoga sessions.
There are SO many stories. I could write pages and pages (maybe someday I will). You’ve given me gift after gift after gift. I only hope I’ve held up my end of the bargain. After all, it’s called Life Healing Life.
And so, I’m to a new beginning again. After spending the last seven years as part-time acupuncturist and totally blessed stay-at-home mom. I’m back to full-time and I’m returning to a place of careful consideration - what’s next? I’ve asked myself, where is my heart? What do I love? And what I love? It’s not fertility acupuncture per se. It’s so much more.
Not to worry - acupuncture always going to be a part of what I do. I adore talking your through your first treatments, explaining what each point is for walking you through treatments. I love being amazed and inspired when the needles do exactly what they are supposed to... but how!? I love exploring the research that is only just starting to show how (it IS science!) These are exciting times! I love Chinese medicine. It has helped me personally, it has helped many babies come into the world, it has helped many of you. But do you know what else has helped you? Nothing short of LIFE!
And this is the part I really LOVE. This is the part that makes my heart go pitter patter! Life is unique individuals, moments, connections, honesty, information and being heard. Life is your choices and what you do and what you don’t do when you walk out my doors. Life is growing, learning, and sometimes just crying or laughing out loud. Life is owning it! “It” includes soaringly high highs and desperately low lows and a whole lot of in between. Life is right here and right now. One of you told me a story: your first son was gone and as you waited for the second’s due date you confessed that even now, you feared you’d never find joy. And then, you held your baby boy in your aching, lonely arms and suddenly found it once again. How much healing it took to get to that moment, but how much healing happened in that moment! When you told me the story, I said, “it’s life, healing life!” and we both cried.
I’m clearer now than 10 years ago. Now, I know I’m not just an acupuncturist who exclusively works in women’s health and fertility. I’m an educator, healer and collaborator who has so much more than acupuncture alone to offer. I don’t fix you, I hear you, collaborate with you and empower you. In the time most acupuncturists see 50 patients, I see 25-30. I spend 10 hours a week communicating with you between visits. I spend another 10 studying, growing, and getting healthier and better myself so I can pass it all on and share it with you! I care about you, not just for you.
It’s been 10 years since I started my practice, and twenty years since my own life was turned upside down through violence and cruelty and hurt. Twenty years since I questioned absolutely everything I thought I "knew" and fell completely and utterly apart (I think you may know the feeling). Seven years into rebuilding myself I found Chinese medicine and somewhere in the last seven I feel as though I’ve finally found myself. Slowly, patiently, through so many connections. It should come as no surprise to you how I found it. Of course, it’s been through nothing more or nothing less than life. It’s life healing life... see, Chinese medicine was the start, but you have healed me, as much as I have healed you. It’s how this works, every single time, and I’m forever grateful. Here’s to the next 10 years. Thank you, thank you, thank you!